Our History

We all love what we do and are excited to meet new patients and catch up with our existing patients. We are a family business and are honored to have every patient join our family.

EyeXcel is a thriving family eye care, vision rehabilitation, and sports vision practice with 2 locations in Knoxville, TN.  Even though the name of the business, EyeXcel, takes a little getting used to, for both current and long term patients, this practice is much older than the new name.  For almost 40 years, beginning in 1978, the practice was known as Drs. Rhyne & Patton.

For many years now the practice has thrived, but that was not always the case.  When Drs. Rhyne and Patton started, they didn’t buy an existing practice with an existing patient base, they started from scratch with zero patients. They started small, and it grew slowly but steadily those first few years. 

The original founders, Dr. Rhyne and Dr. Patton, put in an impressive 40-year career, and have since moved on to other things, but their legacy and the business they built is still going strong.  They had in insight to partner with younger, equally talented, doctors that ultimately took over the practice when the 2 founders were ready to turn it over.

The original and main location is located at 715 Callahan Rd. in North Knoxville.  The road is commercial now with many businesses, but when the practice started, it was a small residential 2-lane road and the practice was the very first business on Callahan Rd, followed shortly after by the huge UPS terminal.  These days Callahan Rd. has transformed from a small back-road into a 4-lane rd, and has provided a wonderful location with easy interstate access for patients.

In 2020 EyeXcel added a second location at 10252 Hardin Valley Rd also in Knoxville.  The project began in 2019, and no-one would have ever predicted that the new location would open in June of 2020, right in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.  It certainly turned out to be horrible timing, but is doing very well and is growing.

EyeXcel is continuing to grow and we are adding doctors and staff.  In 2014 Dr. Bruce D. Gilliland joined the practice.  Being the primary physician in East TN treating low vision, (more serious eye diseases & vision loss) he is a fabulous addition.  In 2016 we welcomed Dr. Frank A Carusone to the team.  He is another great addition by specializing in vision therapy, sports vision and binocular disorders (not how well the eyes see, but how well they function).  In 2018 we welcomed Dr. Heather R. West, who specializes in specialty and harder to fit contact lenses and more serious eye diseases.  The practice continues to grow in large part due to the addition of great doctors that not only perform general eye care but also treat the specialties that other optometrists do not.

Dr. Gilliland & Dr. Carusone now own the practice together, and have done a wonderful job of stepping into the original founders’ shoes to carry on their legacy.   All our doctors have stepped right into place to care for our many patients and continue the wonderful care that we have always given.  They are focused on the future of the practice and have plans to add more doctors to the team in the future so we can continue to serve all the patients we love.  We all enjoy what we do and are excited to meet new patients and catch up with our existing patients. We are still a family business and are honored to have every patient join our family.  Welcome to EyeXcel.